Wars between consoles happen every generation, and a console’s graphical capability is often the primary front of these battles. When it comes to the seventh generation consoles, the two big fighters in the arena are Sony’s Playstation 3 and Microsoft’s Xbox 360. Nintendo’s Wii is, in some ways, their biggest competitor, but in other ways, its in a class all its own.
Of the three seventh generation consoles, the Playstation 3 clearly has the most processing power. However, as of this writing, very few video games have actually taken advantage of the PS3’s superior capabilities, making it an advantage that’s on paper only. Microsoft’s Xbox 360 came out a year before the PS3, but has aged very well and at this point isn’t falling behind the more advanced console.
The Wii simply cannot compete with these graphical giants – and it doesn’t even try. Sporting hardware that is not much different from the sixth generation Gamecube hardware, the Wii has shifted focus from graphical superiority to more fun and more accessible gameplay – it’s a strategy that has worked well for the company.
In 2008, making the investment in a PS3 is investing in the future, and the hoping that the Sony’s promises will be honored. If they are, the PS3 will be strong even as the Xbox 720 (or whatever the next Microsoft console is called) is launched. If not, then the 360 is nearly as powerful graphically and significantly cheaper.
Having a strong library of fun and exciting games is perhaps the biggest driving factor of a good video game console. All three major game consoles are always fighting to obtain exclusive rights to different games. Fortunately for gamers, many game developers have strayed away from this, and the majority of games are available on all consoles. However, several big game franchises are still exclusive: for instance, the Halo and the Gears of War series are still a selling point for the Xbox, while the PS3 offers Metal Gear Solid and some other big name titles. Nintendo is well known for its first-party games, so the Wii is the only place to find the latest Nintendo games, such as those featuring their classic mascot, Mario.
While you can find most games on any of three consoles, its important to keep in mind that the Wii does not have the graphical power of the other two. While its simpler graphics are great for many Wii games, some games need to be pared down to work with the Wii’s hardware. In some cases, the Wii versions of a game can barely resemble the version seen on the Xbox 360 or PS3, so buyer beware.